The Carnarvon Shire Council will not revisit its refusal to fly the Aboriginal flag during NAIDOC Week until June 28, despite WA Premier Colin Barnett criticising it for being too slow.
3 Jun 2016 - 5:29 PM  UPDATED 3 Jun 2016 - 6:27 PM

WA regional Carnarvon Shire Council won't explain why it has not followed state premier Colin Barnett's instruction to immediately reverse its decision to refuse to fly the Aboriginal flag during NAIDOC Week.

The request by the NAIDOC committee was rejected by the Carnarvon council in a 5-4 vote at a meeting in May, sparking outrage among MPs from all major parties.

Premier Colin Barnett issued a “probably not legally binding” instruction to the council to reverse its decision on Wednesday, saying the town had a big Aboriginal population and should be respectful towards and inclusive of Indigenous people.

Shortly after those comments were made to the media, the council said it would revisit the matter at the next meeting on June 28, five days before NAIDOC Week begins.

“That is pathetic — absolutely pathetic. I made it very clear I’ve given an instruction to the Shire of Carnarvon to fly the flag,” Mr Barnett said on Wednesday.

“It’s not that hard — I do it every week in the cabinet process.” 

“I would have thought in the world of modern technology the shire president can get on the phone, speak to his councillors and say ‘we need to reverse this decision’, announce that and formalise it when they have their next council meeting."

NITV News asked the council on Friday why it chose not to reconvene sooner than June 28 given that Mr Barnett advised such response was too slow.

The council did not respond by deadline.

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